Virtuoso: Top Tix for Summer with Right Advisor


The day of the travel agent is far from over. In fact, there is a groundswell of new agent initiatives going on as we dig into travel in the digital age, according to Terrie Hansen, Senior Vice President of Marketing, at Virtuoso, speaking at the recent Digital Travel Summit in Las Vegas.

“The digital era has given rise to the travel advisor community that is growing and growing strong. How many hours a day do we spend with our heads in a smartphone or a laptop? People now want human connection and there is an overwhelming amount of information out there right now so curating that is a huge component of what travelers seek,” said Hansen.

Mobile technology and social media have only enhanced interest in travel advisors, especially as travel becomes more rarefied and complex and the demands of travelers are changing.

“Scavenger hunts in the Louvre? An after-hours tour of the Sistine Chapel? Travel these days is about collaberation and personalized when planning for that one time a year you can go somewhere,” she added.

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Travel Packages Near and Far


Exploring the Wilds of Kenya through SAA Vacations

South African Airways Vacations presents the scenic beauty of Kenya’s national parks and offfers some life-changing experiences in a new 7-night “Discover Kilimanjaro & the Masai Mara” package available for departures on Sundays between September 23 & December 9, 2016. Read more »

Cruise Hits: Why Agents Keep on Selling


Lower airfares, favorable currency exchange rates and more affordable cruise options have travel agents reeling while writing boarding tickets for the world’s top cruise ships. Those findings are detailed in a report by Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), one of a series that seeks to forecast trends in the cruise industry among the travel agent community.

According to the Q2 report, more than half the agents polled (53 percent) stated that lower airfares have had a positive impact on cruise sales, with cruise travelers finding it more affordable to travel to and from cruise ports. Similarly, 30 percent of agents stated that favorable currency exchange rates are making cruising more attractive for customers interested in international cruise vacations. Read more »

Avalon Waterways: Romancing the Danube



avalon danube

In Germany and Austria river cruising is a religion. The spiritual lift one gets from cruising along iconic waterways and watching the old world go by, castle by castle, can only be described as other worldly. It’s a moment that can still be made, though, with a spurt of imagination and unparalleled comforts that make it all flow.

Such moments were in play recently on the Passion, the latest luxury river cruising vessel to be christened by Avalon Waterways in Europe. It was the river cruise company’s 12th suite ship (there are 16 river vessels in all) and the moment was kicked off with the crack of Champagne delivered by Jill Ellis—the head coach of the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team, at a docking site on the Danube in Linz, Austria. Read more »

The Beaumont: London’s Mayfair with Flair

Beaumont Lobby

If you are looking for luxury in London you will no doubt wander through the city’s legendary Mayfair district and find yourself melting into scenes played out in films from Merchant and Ivory to Alfred Hitchcock. What you won’t expect to find is “ROOM” and the collection of art and expression bundled into one of Mayfair’s newest oeuvres in hospitality: The Beaumont.




Business Travel: Leading Stressors

train spotting

Travel, whether leisure or business, is stressful. But for business travelers this can be particularly true. From flight cancellations to lost luggage, a new survey reveals that business travelers experience a higher level of travel stress due to the gamut of anxiety-inducing scenarios that leave them worried and anxious. Mix in unforeseen circumstances within the global climate, and the stress level increases even more. The reality, though, is that business travelers still have to travel. Read more »

Plans for Paris? Mon Dieu! What to Pack?

how-to-pack for Paris

Paris may be loveable in every season of the year but packing for those moments can put a damper on the romance. Packing for Paris requires careful consideration. Winter can be bone chilling: wet snows, whipping winds chills, nights that dip into the teens. Spring and fall are lovely, indeed, with a mix of temperatures and conditions that require a handy pocket umbrella and a course in layering. Summer in Paris is pure splendor, with and without the crowds. And in July the time is sublime with warm, dry, sunny days. The average temperature for this time of year starts off at around 65 degrees at the beginning of July and inches up to a balmy 68 degrees by the end.

So what to pack? First consideration: leave the shorts at home. Scanty hippy-garb and sloppy backpacker duds are definitely démodé in the City of Lights. Even the canines sport a certain fashion sense on these bustling sidewalks. But that said, casual can be simplement in France. Read more »